The #EndSARS campaign has caught fire beyond Nigeria, spreading to the UK and USA and netting celebrities such as Davido and DJ Cuppy to identify with it.
In the UK, a notable voice that has joined the campaign is Nigerian-British movie star, John Boyega.
In multiple tweets, he wrote:
“Three years ago Nigeria’s police chief re-organised SARS after public condemnation about the violence that came with their operations. That change has done nothing for Nigerians and today many are still in danger.
“We can’t simply enjoy Banana island every December without noticing the concrete wall placed between Nigerians and their potential. The limitations become unbearable for them and this needs serious attention.
“The youth in Nigeria deserve good leadership and guidance. This situation is tied to many other issues. Please lend your attention to this pressing problem! #EndSARSImmediately #EndSarsProtests #EndSARS #EndSARSProtest”.
Boyega’s tweets lent immediate international dimension to the protests. His tweets were retweeted over 20,000 times.
The BBC reported today that The hashtag #ENDSARS trended at no.1 worldwide on Friday, as adamant protestors continue to demand the disbandment of the notorious police unit in Nigeria.
After being initially lukewarm to the protest, celebrities such as DJ Cuppy and Davido also identified with the protest.
DJ Cuppy apologised for her silence, while chilling off in Dubai and wrote:
“I would (be) lying if I said I’m DIRECTLY affected by SARS but a lot of my Cupcakes are and that’s enough for me to care. I stand behind the movement to #EndPoliceBrutality AND #EndSARS (Flag of Nigeria).
Davido also wrote: “No reform No change of oga No ban … we want it scrapped completely!!! #EndSARSImmediately”.
The mega star also reminded his fans by retweeting the recent murder by the police tactical squad of a promising football player and member of Remo Stars Football Club, Tiamiyu Kazeem.
The protests have triggered wide participation across the country, in the principal cities of Lagos, Abuja and Ibadan.
In Lagos, protesters kept a night vigil at the Government Secretariat, awaiting Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who was not in town, as he had gone on election duty in Ondo State.
In Abuja, protesters massing at police headquarters were shelled with tear gas on Thursday and today.
Protests also erupted in other major towns, such as Ughelli in Delta state, where the police claimed protesters killed their officer and gravely wounded another.
For now, the Police High Command while acknowledging the rights of citizens to protest, has has not given any undertaking to disband the obnoxious FSARS.
Instead, it threatened to deal with ‘berserk’ protesters who attack police personnel or assets.
Frank Mba, police spokesman said in a statement on Friday that the Force will no longer tolerate any attack on its personnel or any member of the law enforcement community by any individual or group protesting under any guise.
“The IGP notes that protest by citizens remain a legitimate means for airing their concerns and views. It must however be carried out with all sense of responsibility and within the confines of the law”, Mba said.